The effectiveness of nifedipine retard as a treatment for Raynaud's phenomenon was assessed in 15 patients in a placebo controlled double blind study. An associated connective tissue disease was evident in 7 patients. Changes in finger and forearm blood flow (venous occlusion plethysmography), digital skin temperature and digital systolic pressure were measured acutely before and after a 2-week treatment period. Subjective assessment of efficacy was based on patient diary data. In addition alpha 2-adrenoceptor density on platelets was measured before and after chronic nifedipine therapy in both the patient group and in an age-and-sex-matched control group. No significant haemodynamic changes were observed. Nifedipine retard significantly reduced the frequency (p less than 0.05) with no change in either the duration or severity of vasospastic attacks. Side effects were common following nifedipine retard. A reduction in alpha 2-adrenoceptor density on platelets was observed in patients compared to a control group (p less than 0.05). Alpha 2-adrenoceptor density was unchanged following a 2-week treatment period with nifedipine retard. This study concludes that nifedipine retard is not effective in the treatment of Raynaud's phenomenon over a short time course. Patients with Raynaud's phenomenon have reduced alpha 2-adrenoceptor densities on their platelets.
|Number of pages||7|
|Publication status||Published - 1988|